"Businessmen and companies that lie to get their hands on taxpayer money will be held accountable for their actions," said a U.S. Attorney. "When some people cheat, those who play by the rules are put at a disadvantage."
"Patients and taxpayers rightly should expect that referrals be based on sound medical judgement, not driven by thinly veiled bribes, as alleged here," said a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General.
Between 2006 and 2017, according to the Justice Department, Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc., billed Medicare, Medicaid and other government healthcare programs for hundreds of thousands of insulin pens that it knowingly dispensed to people who did not need them. The nationwide pharmacy has agreed to pay $209.2 million to settle the government's claims.
In December, the New York Attorney General's Office and the state tax commissioner reached a record-breaking settlement with Sprint and several subsidiaries. A whistleblower filed a lawsuit under the state's false claims act, which allows private citizens to file lawsuits on behalf of the government when they notice fraud, waste or abuse in state contracting.
If you work for an organization that contracts with the federal government, you may have observed questionable or even fraudulent activity. Did you know you could earn a substantial reward by blowing the whistle on fraud, waste or abuse of a federal contract or program? The reward could be between 15 and 30 percent of any money recovered on behalf of the government.
"By bringing allegations of fraud to light, whistleblowers play an important role in protecting the integrity of our healthcare system," says the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
The False Claims Act invites private-citizen whistleblowers to file lawsuits against companies that they believe are engaging in fraud, waste or abuse in government contracting. When these lawsuits are successful, the whistleblower can receive a substantial portion of the money recovered as a reward for their service. Sometimes, the federal government intervenes in these lawsuits, which does not affect the whistleblower's rights but sometimes improves the lawsuit's chances for success.
Vascular Access Centers L.P., along with 23 subsidiaries and related corporations, has been accused of Medicare fraud, violating the False Claims Act, and violating the Anti-Kickback Statute and have agreed to pay at least $3,825 million to resolve the allegations. If certain contingencies arise, additional payments up to $18,360,794 could be triggered.
The Hunters Point Naval Shipyard in San Francisco is being redeveloped into housing and commercial space. Between 1946 and 1969, however, the former Navy shipyard was involved in activities that created significant amounts of radioactive waste. First, the facility was the location of top-secret nuclear tests. Second, it was where ships were decontaminated after returning from hydrogen bomb tests. Cleaning up the radioactive waste is expected to cost at least $1 billion.
Between Jan. 1, 2006 and Dec. 31, 2011, the Justice Department says, a Miami-based mortgage originator called the Universal American Mortgage Company LLC (UAMC) knowingly originated mortgages under the Federal Housing Administration mortgage insurance program that did not qualify with that program's lending requirements. These defective loans violated the False Claims Act because the FHA mortgage insurance program is left on the hook when its insured mortgages go into foreclosure.